Trails of Vietnam - 17 Days

Trip Code

TOVN16D

Departure Date

Daily

Duration

15 days

Views

229

Maximum Seats

4

What's Included?

Accommodation
All Transport
All Meals
All Entrance fees
Tour guide
Airline tickets on tour

Summary

Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)Buon Ma ThuotPleikuKontumHoi AnHueVinhNinh BinhHalong BayHanoi

Our Trails of Vietnam journey takes a fascinating look into some of Vietnam’s more remote areas and is designed bfor those looking to see a different side to the country, or for travellers returning to Vietnam. From the bright lights of Saigon we travel through the incredible scenery and rich ethnic cultures of the Central Highlands, visit Bach Ma National Park in Central Vietnam, the World Heritage-listed Phong Nha Caves and finish with the breathtaking beauty of Halong Bay and the stately capital of Hanoi.

Tour Overview

Day 1

Day 1 - Ho Chi Minh City

Arrive in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam’s commercial heart and largest city. Transfer to your hotel followed by a tour briefing, welcome drinks and your first taste of Vietnamese cuisine. Accommodation: 2 Nights GRAND HOTEL
Day 2

Day 2 - Ho Chi Minh City

Walking tour of Saigon visiting the many famous and historic landmarks of the city. We walk up famous Dong Khoi street (formerly Rue Catinat) past the theatre, Rex Hotel, Town Hall, and the Notre Dame Cathedral. We visit the Presidential Palace and War Crimes Museum and then drive to the bustling Cholon district (Chinatown). Visit Binh Tay, the huge wholesale market and the ornate Thien Hau temple before lunch. We then travel to the famous Vietcong tunnels at Cu Chi by boat. This incredible system, covering nearly 250km, was shelter to over 16,000 communist guerillas during the war. We gain an insight into the tenacity of these soldiers and have the opportunity to go inside the tunnels
Day 3

Day 3 – Ho Chi Minh City to Buon Ma Thuot

This morning we fly to the coastal city of Nha Trang then begin our road journey towards Buon Ma Thuot in the Central Highlands – the coffee growing centre of Vietnam. The scenic drive passes through many Bana ethnic minority villages and through vast coffee, rubber, maize and pepper plantations. In the afternoon, stop at the local pagoda and monastery and the ruins of an old French prison, then head to the countryside to visit the peaceful ethnic minority village of Buon Don on the banks of the Serepok River. Accommodation: 1 Night THANH LOI HOTEL
Day 4

Day 4 –Buon Ma Thuot to Pleiku

Spend a morning exploring the waterfalls and beautiful surroundings of Cum Thac Falls, the largest of which is 50 metres long. After lunch we head north to Pleiku. The drive is again spectacular, passing through many plantations, rolling hills and forests. Arrive in Pleiku by late afternoon. Accommodation: 2 Nights DUC LONG LOI HOTEL
Day 5

Day 5 – Pleiku

See the contrasting and unusual customs of the local minority people in the villages around Pleiku. We first visit the Jarai people of Plei Phun village and explore the surrounding countryside. After lunch, we stop at Bien Ho volcanic lake then continue onto the Mnong Khmer ethnic minority village of Bana for an insight into the lives of these interesting people.
Day 6

Day 6 – Pleiku to Kontum

This morning we continue north to the sleepy town of Kontum. We visit an interesting wooden church built by the French almost a century ago and the adjoining orphanage, home to many children from the surrounding villages. Stop by the beautiful old French seminary and museum then mix with the friendly people in the colourful local market. Finally take a casual walk through the village of Play Tho Nghia on the outskirts of town. Accommodation: 1 Night DAKBLA HOTEL
Day 7

Day 7 – Kontum to Hoi An

Today is the most spectacular drive of your tip as we head north, following the old Ho Chi Minh Trail and ascending further into the highlands. We pass many cotton, cassava and rubber plantations that eventually give way to small, terraced ride paddies. We also pass through beautiful forested areas and many small villages, home to Kotu and Coto ethnic minority people. Enjoy a picnic lunch in the tranquil surrounds and finally descend to the coastal plains of central Vietnam and the merchant town of Hoi An. Accommodation: 3 Nights ANCIENT HOUSE RESORT
Day 8

Day 8 – Hoi An

Today you will have a chance to become a ‘Hoi An local for a day’ for a hands- on insight into the lives of the local farmers and fisherman. In the evening, join the rest of the group for a fun and informative cooking class at a friend’s restaurant.
Day 9

Day 9 – Hoi An

Enjoy a free day today to discover this quaint town and its numerous places of interest. Explore art and craft galleries, get some clothes tailor-made, relax at a riverside restaurant or take the short journey to the nearby beach.
Day 10

Day 10 – Hoi An to Bach Ma & Hue

This morning we travel north towards Hue, detouring to visit an old French resort area in the midst of Bach Ma National Park and to explore the surrounding forest and waterfalls. We arrive in Hue in the afternoon. Divided by the Perfume River, Hue is the centre for Buddhism, art and literature for Vietnam, and was the last imperial capital. Accommodation: 2 Nights HUONG GIANG HOTEL
Day 11

Day 11 – Hue

This morning we travel just outside of Hue and visit the extensive tomb of the former emperor Ming Mang. Returning to the city, enjoy a cyclo ride around the walls of the ancient citadel, former home to the emperors. In the evening sample some of Hue’s famous cuisine.
Day 12

Day 12 – Hue, Phong Nha Caves & Vinh

Heading inland along the route of the old Ho Chi Minh Trail, we explore the World Heritage listed Phong Nha Caves. After a boat ride through the picturesque countryside we explore the wet cave system then disembark and climb up to the dry cave nestled in the cliffs above. Return by boat then continue onto Vinh, passing spectacular scenery along the way. Accommodation: 1 Night KIM LIEN HOTEL
Day 13

Day 13 – Vinh, Tam Coc & Ninh Binh

Vinh is the birthplace of national hero Ho Chi Minh, and this morning we visit the small cottage where he was born before heading north to Tam Coc, know as ‘Halong Bay on land’. Enjoy a tranquil boat cruise through the picturesque limestone karsts and caves before continuing onto Ninh Binh. Accommodation: 1 Night THUY ANH HOTEL
Day 14

Day 14 – Ninh Binh, Cuc Phuong & Halong Bay

This morning we explore the beautiful Cuc Phuong National Park with its incredible plantlife and beautiful scenery. We also stop at the interesting primate rehabilitation centre before continuing onto Halong Bay. Accommodation: 1 Night HALONG 1 HOTEL
Day 15

Day 15 – Halong Bay

This morning explore Halong Bay, Vietnam’s greatest natural wonder. We spend the morning cruising among some of the 3,000 limestone islands that rise out of the sea, and explore some spectacular caves and grottoes in the area. Take a swim (weather permitting), and we enjoy a superb seafood lunch on board. In the afternoon we return to Hanoi, stopping at a ceramic village en route and returning by late afternoon. Accommodation: 2 Nights SUNWAY HOTEL
Day 16

Day 16 - Hanoi

We begin our exploration of Hanoi with a visit to the Ho Chi Minh Quarter, starting at the mausoleum – set on the spot in Ba Dinh Square where Ho Chi Minh first declared independence from the French in 1945. We continue to the humble “house on stilts” from where Ho Chi Minh ruled north Vietnam until his death in 1969. We also see the French colonial presidential palace, the amazing Ho Chi Minh museum and One Pillar Pagoda, dating from the 11th century. We then visit the Temple of Literature, Hanoi’s first university, dating to 1070. Finally we stop at the infamous ‘Hanoi Hilton’ – the former prison where US pilots who were shot down during the Vietnam war were held. The remainder of the afternoon is free for last minute shopping or your own exploration. In the evening, join the group for a farewell with our last taste of Vietnamese cuisine.
Day 17

Day 17 - Depart Hanoi

After breakfast, transfer to the airport where your journey ends.

Trip Map

PRICES & INCLUDES

Option Private Tour Small Group Hotel
 Standard 1845 USD 1631 USD 3 & 4star
Deluxe/Superior 2051 USD 1862 USD 4 & 5star

* From prices subject to availability and subject to change. Prices may fluctuate if surcharges, fees, taxes or currency change. Amounts payable to third parties not included. We include all flights as detailed within the trip summary for each tour. From the moment you land in the starting city to the moment you are transferred to the airport in the end city, all transport arrangements are taken care of by us. Agents may charge service fees and/or fees for credit card payments which vary. Please check all prices, availability and other information with your travel consultant before booking. If you book with TUI an additional 3% fee applies to credit card or charge card payments .

INCLUDES:

* 16 nights hotel accommodation.
* Breakfast , Lunch , Dinner daily.
* All transfers and transport in
modern air-conditioned vehicles.
* Sightseeing as specified .
* Expert Vietnamese local guides
throughout.
* Boat trips as specified.

EXCLUDES:
  • Hotel EARLY check in & LATE check out
  • Peak season surcharge & compulsory dinner at the hotel (if any)
  • International flights with taxes
  • Visa or Passport Fees
  • Travel Insurance
  • Tips, laundry and gratuities
  • Meals not marked on itinerary, and water during meals

Children Policy

  • The rate for children applicable for one child sharing a twin or double cabin with two adults
  • For infant (<04 years old): FOC except domestic ticket cost
  • 04 – 11 years old without bed: 50% adult rate
  • 04 – 11 years old with extra bed: 75% adult rate
  • 04 – 11 years old in twin share: 90% adult rate

Responsible Travel

TUI practices a thorough, realistic Responsible Travel Policy, full details of which can be found in our website – Click here.

Travel Facts

Q & A : Before You Go

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Tour Name Price Per Adult Price Per Child Available Seats Departure Date Tripcode Duration
Trails of Vietnam - 17 Days $ 1,845 $ 0 4 Anytime 15 days TOVN16D

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36 Reviews
  • {}
    Tony

    Just wanted you to know that Troy and I had the best trip ever to Cambodia and Vietnam! Everything was perfect. Sadly, we had to cut our Halong Bay Cruise short one day because a typhoon was coming but they immediately took us back to Hanoi and upgraded us to a fabulous suite. At least we got one night on board, it was sad to leave but we managed to do most of our activities that first day on the boat…bike riding, kayaking in and out of caves, tai chi on deck, cooking class and several fabulous meals. Once again, thank you. Would highly recommend TUI to anybody!!!!

  • {}
    Dr. Leong Ying, US

    “…definitely the most professional tour vacation I’d experienced. From the booking onwards, you folks have top ratings all-round. Your Tour Leader (Phil Jordan) deserves high praises for his expert handling….and both local guides (Sarem in Phnom Penh and Phath in Siem Reap) were also top-notch. I’ll be spreading your company’s virtue around, and from now on you folks will be the first tour company I’ll look to for organizing any future outings out east.

    On behalf of Martin and myself, our eternal thanks for making the Cambodian vacation so relaxing and enjoyable by looking after us so well.”

  • {}
    Angela Marinucci, Australia

    “I would like to compliment TUI on their superior customer service. It seems to me that many travel companies think their work ends at drawing up itineraries and arranging hotels. However, I found that your company really values the customer experience and this was shown by the phone calls we received in each city, checking whether we had found the experience to our expectation. I think this alone is ingenious, as any problems can be addressed immediately and not potentially left to mar the whole holiday. In all, a wonderful experience in a superb country.”

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    Michel, US

    “Just a quick note to let you know that our trip to Vietnam was a “flawless adventure” one that we will never forget. I know we hit the jackpot with TUI for many reasons, but one of the biggest was the size of the group. If I ever go on another tour, it will be with a 15 person maximum! Emmie and all local guides were outstanding and the other travellers on our tour were all nice people and easy to get along with. We loved every minute, all the sites, food, history, people, etc. Truly a successful trip! “

  • {}
    Charles & Anne Gilson, UK

    “We just got back a couple of days ago form our Vietnam trip and I just wanted to tell you what a wonderful time we had! We were thrilled to have had Josh as our guide and we couldn’t have asked for a more professional, thoughtful, enthusiastic and just plain fun guide. Vietnam is a tremendous destination and it offered everything we hoped for, but Josh’s guidance really enhanced our experience of the culture. We would not hesitate to book another tour with TUI (although, sadly, it may be some time before we have the opportunity to do so) and have been thoroughly satisfied with our experience. I particularly appreciate your flexibility in dealing with the Visa problem that caused us to cancel our original booking. I cannot say enough about our trip – suffice to say that you’ll be hearing from us again soon!”

  • {}
    Louise Kenna, Australia

    “I have just returned from my holiday to Vietnam and Cambodia and wanted you to know that the trip was fantastic. We visited all the big ticket items, many small unknown places and had a great experience. The trip was very well organised, accommodation was much better than expected, guides were very good (a couple were exceptional). Congratulations on a well put together trip. Our tour leader was Natalie (Nat) Bemrose. Nat started the trip as our guide but ended the trip as our friend. She was terrific as a guide, friend and travel companion. We never had to bother about anything…because Nat handled everything so well. She made sure all our accommodation was acceptable, helped with food and advice on what extra to see in our free time and above all she was just a pleasure to travel with.”

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    Sandra King, Australian

    “We had a great month of travel in Vietnam. Vietnam is a beautiful country, but a major contributor to the success of this trip was the excellent tour company, TUI. The journey was obviously well planned by people who know and love the country and are sensitive to the needs of the traveller. A company can have a grand vision, but it is the front line people who make it happen and TUI has obviously chosen its tour leaders and guides well. Fi Reeves, our tour leader, won 12 devoted followers through her unfailing organizational skills, knowledge of the country, and good humour. Fi knew how to help us have fun, and we shared many good meals, good times, and even a karaoke session. All our local guides were excellent, especially Mr Phiem. His English skills were excellent, his good humour and bad jokes endless, and his ability to answer our questions about Vietnam was exceptional. We are very glad we decided to travel with TUI to Vietnam. “

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    Sonia, Australia

    “I adored Laos! The people are still so open and kind. It might just be my favourite country in Southeast Asia. We only had 5 people in our group and that was an ideal amount of companions. The logistics of the trip were fantastic; there were always vans waiting for us at each stop and airport, and the drivers were excellent! Our guide in Laos was a very nice guy who will get even better with more experience leading groups. I was impressed with your itinerary and the nice variety of accommodations. Based on my experience and on my travelmate’s recommendations, I would definitely travel with you again. Thanks for sharing Laos with me.”

  • {}
    Sandra Blake, Australia

    “I have just returned from the tour of a Tale of Three Cities and had an absolutely fantastic holiday. Belinda Shillcock was a superb organiser, she put 120% effort into the trip, and helped make it a journey of a lifetime. I would also like to add that the three local guides that assisted Belinda were also excellent and certainly able to answer any questions that were put to them. I have recommended the tour to many people back in England – the space on the coach, the choice of hotels, the excellent choice of restaurants and overall maximizing the use of time to gain as much knowledge of Vietnam and Cambodia. I can say we all came back with a thorough comprehensive understanding of both those countries – much of it thanks to Belinda. I enjoyed it so much that I am now thinking of joining one of your trips around China – especially if your guides are the calibre of Belinda. She really was exceptional.”

  • {}
    James Jordon, UK

    “We would like to thank you and everyone else involved from your company, TUI, for our recent, absolutely amazing, fantastic trip. As this was our first trip with TUI we were a little nervous about what was to come however, what did eventuate far exceeded our expectations. Thanks to the expertise, professionalism and passion of the tour guide Belinda Schillcock, and her three local helpers, every day unfolded as a magical experience leaving us with a ‘real sense’ of the places we visited.
    As your brochure suggests, we ‘were captivated by the wonders of the countries in which we travelled in’ and our experiences increased our understanding of the history & culture of those places & their peoples.’
    We have nothing but the highest praise for TUI and will strongly recommend the company to all of our friends. Our sincerest congratulations for one of, if not, the best tour we have ever experienced. “

  • {}
    Eileen Eastwood, UK

    “We travelled to Vietnam with you two years ago with Katrina Cameron as our guide. We have travelled all over the world and this was by far the best experience of our lives. The small group travel concept is fabulous beyond words. We made some wonderful friends and enjoyed ourselves immensely. This year we are back and would like to see China this way with you again.”

  • {}
    Roger Pacre, Canada

    “I had the best trip to Vietnam with you and will not think twice about coming back to you when it’s time to head back to Asia. Great news about your UK office, hope it gets you more British support for your trips so you can run even more! We always recommend you – my American friend loved her trip last year proving you really do have international appeal!”

  • {}
    Mrs Hawkshaw, Canada

    “I wanted to express to you my appreciation for making my travels an experience that I will never forget. Zoe Macfarlane really went out of her way to insure that myself and the group was not only well informed of each place that we would be visiting, but she wanted each of us to get everything that we individually wanted from every location and I am confident in saying that I saw a different side of Thailand that most travelers would have. I honestly never write these letters after I have finished a trip, but I felt compelled to do so because the service was that extraordinary. The next time I travel to South East Asia I will use your organization again, as I am confident in your company’s ability to put together unbelievable trips and hire extraordinary guides. Again, thank you for the memories, the professionalism, and please thank Ms Macfarlane for making this trip a true experience.”

  • {}
    Mollie Woolacott, UK

    “We are just sorting our Vietnam photos and recalling what an enjoyable trip it was! Everything went very well. The group of 8 got along very well which contributed a lot to the enjoyment of the tour – we all ate out most nights together, a good indication I think. Our tour leader Zoe, was excellent and organisation of everything went very smoothly. As an introduction to Vietnam it worked very well, and we’ll certainly consider another TUI tour in the future. We have already recommended your website to friends and family.”

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    Phillip Rankin, New Zealand

    “We had a wonderful time – what a thoroughly professional and well organised company! Ned was our tour guide and we were so lucky to have her – she has a real passion for the country and the people. I loved Vietnam and will be heading back there. I loved Hoi An – the beach, food of the area, art galleries, tailors and the fact every bar had 5 hour happy hour 2 for 1 drinks each night! I have already got a couple of our clients that I am going to go through TUI’s brochure and my pictures with.”

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    T Johnson, Australia

    “A huge thank you for the help with organising our recent trip to Vietnam. We had a wonderful time, thoroughly enjoyed every minute and have been singing the praises of the country and TUI since we returned. It was the best holiday we have had in years. Everything went so smoothly, Claire was a joy, quietly organised and Tifo and Viet both great sources of knowledge and good fun. Nothing was too much trouble for any of them. They were all great ambassadors for TUI.”

  • {}
    Ann Hitchings, New Zealand

    “Our trip to Vietnam was an incredible experience. Words cannot fully explain how much we enjoyed the trip. Felicity, our tour guide was marvellous. She was not only a great organiser and guide, but a great person who went well outside her responsibilities to ensure that our trip was a memorable one. Next year we are looking to visit Cambodia and I will contact you when we begin planning!”

  • {}
    Anne McCarthy, Australian

    “Just a quick note to say my 10 day highlights of Vietnam was AWESOME… the tour totally exceeded my expectations. The hotels were awesome and Stacey, our guide, was fantastic as were the local guides! Loved EVERY minute of it, I can’t even find a fault or complaint if I tried! I can’t talk highly enough about it …I really want to say thank you so much for organising it all for me. Definitely recommend to ALL ages and people! “

  • {}
    Arron Dann, New Zealand

    “Flicks vitality, enthusiasm and general caring and warm personality really made this experience for me so rewarding. Nothing was too much trouble for her. She is a real asset to your organisaton. I wish I had staff like her… I would love to do another tour in the future but don’t know how any tour leader can now measure up to Ms Flick.”

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    Geoff Burton, Australian

    “I knew nothing about Vietnam as a holiday destination but I had the holiday of a lifetime. Every day living history was witnessed, transport between events and venues was excellent, the food was wonderful and it was top value for money!”

  • {}
    Jill Martin, Australian

    “Awesome country. Awesome people. Awesome trip. Awesome!”

  • {}
    Natasha Dunn, Australian

    “The itinerary was well thought out and I feel I have a real sense of all aspects of life in Vietnam – the history, its political system, food and culture.”

  • {}
    Peter Laing, Australian

    “The Vietnam tour was FANTASTIC….our tour guide, Joshua, from TUI was one out of the box !!! It was so good having someone organise internal flights, where to eat, what to expect to pay etc. etc. He was our eyes, ears and tastebuds. The pace of the tour was also great. Do put Vietnam on your agenda before it becomes too commercial. The food, people, countryside, history and shopping are all soooo amazing!”

  • {}
    Carolyn and Tony Herrick, Australian

    “I wanted to say a very big personal thank you from Janet and me for the absolutely amazing and outstanding holiday we had in China. It turned out to be a far better trip in all respects from that we were anticipating and I can only say again for the nth time how glad we both are that we chose TUI for our trip. The organisation was in our view faultless, the accommodation far better than we expected and ideally located, and the things we did and saw, fantastic. When we got home we re-read the Company Brochure and the best complement we can give is to say that the Tour achieves exactly what it says in the Book.”

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    Kassandra Jackson, New Zealand

    “It was great to have a local guide who had amazing knowledge of his country. I really enjoyed hearing Mr Boulae’s experiences and his running of the tour was superb. I loved the boat ride down the Mekong, and it was amazing to see the giving of the alms by the monks.”

  • {}
    Joan & Allen Grant, USA

    “Our leader Rebecca is a natural treasure. The local restaurants, shopping and history are amazing. Hue’s Saigon Morin was pure bliss – I enjoy the colonial/planter atmosphere – that TUI uses.”

  • {}
    Doug Jossem, USA

    “On an ‘adventure’ holiday I did not expect such good hotels in such great locations, so was pleasantly surprised!”

  • {}
    Tricia Watson, UK

    “The flow of this trip was so smooth & felt so effortless & natural. Our tour leader Rebecca was so efficient in making everything work out well, keeping calm under any circumstance!””

  • {}
    Tony Walker, Australian

    “Our local guide Mr Saren’s very genuine personal guided tour of Phnom Penh’s Toul Sleng Museum was unforgettable. It made it poignant and real in a way that only someone that lives there could do”

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    Maggie Wingett & Phil Wright, Australian

    “Our local guide “Matthew” was absolutely lovely, great company, friendly, polite, helpful, with good ideas for our itinerary, and met all our requirements. Please may I take him home?”

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    Susan Bramley , English

    “I loved cycling and walking in the countryside outside Yangshuo – being able to get close to the rural population in China. Of course, cruising the Yangtze and passing through the locks was also a highlight!”

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    Dawn Steiner, USA

    “I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Thailand. The places were interesting and the people so friendly. It was made all the more enjoyable with our great guide! Staying in the Floating Hotel and Lisu Lodge were fantastic experiences”

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    Carol and Harvey Thibault, Canadian

    “Our local guide was exceptional, with a real passion toward his job, always wanting to impart his knowledge onto us. Staying in the jungle rafts on the River Kwai was a once in a lifetime experience!”

  • {}
    Wayne Baldwin, Australian

    “We really enjoyed everything – the sights and sounds, the people (both Vietnamese and fellow-travellers) and Monica Fairley, our tour leader was excellent. Our minds are still buzzing with images and recollections from Vietnam and Cambodia while we get back to ‘normality’, whatever that it!”

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    Anjali Gupta, USA

    “Had a fantastic holiday….Kristy was great, positive, professional and kept everyone happy. Not easy the age range was 30-80! Fantastic small group, no problems at all. Gorgeous hotels all the way! Going to China for holidays next year and will definitely use you guys, can I have Kristy again though?”

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    Sharon Veeh, USA

    “I do want to go on record to say that our trip last November/December to Cambodia and Vietnam was a huge, huge once-in-a-lifetime experience for us two. We have been praising your company every chance we’ve had since we returned home. Your planning, your timing, your sensitivity, your professionalism were extraordinary! “